Risk Management Tools & Resources

 


Opioid Prescribing: Navigating Through a Crisis

Marcy A. Metzgar and Laura M. Cascella, MA, CPHRM

Opioid Prescribing: Navigating Through a Crisis

Opioid addiction is arguably one of the most significant public health crises in the United States over the past few decades. Increases in opioid prescribing and consumption in the late 1990s and first decade of the 2000s fueled an epidemic of overdoses, a national heroin crisis, and a rise in deaths from synthetic opioids.1

Opioid prescribing has been declining since 2012; yet, these powerful analgesics still present serious concerns. Estimates suggest that more than 130 people die every day from opioid-related drug overdoses, and the amount of opioids prescribed per person is still around three times higher than it was in 1999. Additionally, opioids contribute to more than two-thirds of all drug overdose deaths.2

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15 Essential Risk Management Strategies for General Surgeons

Laura M. Cascella, MA, CPHRM

Opioid Prescribing: Navigating Through a Crisis

General surgeons face various risks in day-to-day practice. Adverse outcomes related to surgical treatment, diagnosis, and medical treatment can result from a variety of factors, including issues with technical competency, clinical judgment, communication, documentation, and more. The following list offers 15 essential strategies to help general surgeons mitigate risks and enhance patient safety.

  1. Participate in ongoing performance improvement opportunities to enhance technical surgical skills and ensure competency (e.g., mentoring, continuing education, and ongoing practice performance evaluation).

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Lurking Beneath the Surface: Bias in Pain Management

Laura M. Cascella, MA, CPHRM

Lurking Beneath the Surface: Bias in Pain Management

Bias in healthcare is a persistent issue, both at an institutional level and among individuals. The downstream effect of this problem is evident in negative outcomes and health disparities for various populations. In particular, issues of bias have been noted in research focusing on variances in pain management. Studies have shown that:

  • Racial and ethnic minority patients are less likely than white patients to receive any pain treatment or adequate pain treatment.
  • Women are less likely than men to be treated aggressively for pain, and they wait longer to receive treatment for acute pain.

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Feeling the Burn? 10 Ways Healthcare Providers Can Proactively Address Burnout

Laura M. Cascella, MA, CPHRM

Feeling the Burn? 10 Ways Healthcare Providers Can Proactively Address Burnout

Burnout in healthcare is rampant, and it is not limited to one clinical setting or a particular type of provider. Rather, feelings of exhaustion, cynicism, pessimism, detachment, and ineffectiveness can take a grip on healthcare providers of various ages, backgrounds, and specialties and have far-reaching consequences.

The factors that contribute to burnout — much like its symptoms and outcomes — are wide-ranging and vary for individuals. At a broad level, contributing factors include inefficient workflows, suboptimal technology, increasing regulations, healthcare provider shortages, heavy workloads, loss of autonomy, and shifting values. The consensus view is that burnout is triggered by decisions and factors that mostly are beyond healthcare providers' control and often conflict with their values and moral code. "Regulatory and institutional policies, payer requirements, and intrusive, difficult technologies all challenge the basic ethical motivations that are essential to professional fulfillment of the human beings who are central to high-quality patient care."1

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Five Ways Healthcare Organizations Can Confront Burnout and Build Cultures of Well-Being and Resiliency

Laura M. Cascella, MA, CPHRM

Five Ways Healthcare Organizations Can Confront Burnout and Build Cultures of Well-Being and Resiliency

The impact of organizational culture on productivity, morale, staff retention, patient outcomes, safety, security, and overall well-being in healthcare is profound. A toxic culture can enable or even encourage a range of inappropriate and harmful behaviors, such as bullying, sexual harassment, and abuses of power. In these situations, the cultural deficiencies and their consequences might be conspicuous. In other circumstances, though, cultural problems might not be toxic in an overt way. Rather, more discreet issues — such as suboptimal processes, workload fatigue, loss of autonomy, and work–life imbalance — can compound to produce a pernicious effect, such as clinician and staff burnout.

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Addressing Racial Disparity in Maternal Health

One of the key challenges in addressing maternal mortality is the racial disparity that exists. Among high-resource countries, the United States has the highest rate of maternal mortality, and the risk is three to four times higher for black women, according to the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.1

Some contributing factors to the racial disparity include unconscious biases — both institutional and structural racism — and lack of insurance.

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Strategies to Prevent Maternal Morbidity and Mortality

An increasing number of pregnant women in the United States have chronic health conditions, such as hypertension, diabetes, and chronic heart disease, which put them at a higher risk of pregnancy complications.When combined with hemorrhage, cardiovascular disease, sepsis, and other health problems, these conditions have been responsible for a large number of pregnancy-related deaths in the United States.

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15 Strategies for Tackling the Top Malpractice Allegation in Gynecology

MedPro Group data show that allegations related to surgical treatment represent the largest claims category for gynecology providers (67 percent of all gynecology claims closed between 2008 and 2017). Surgical treatment allegations also account for almost two-thirds of all dollars paid for expense and indemnity costs associated with gynecology claims.

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